Monetary cooperation between Africa and France is conducted though central banks, key partners of the Banque de France, and the institutional bodies of the two monetary unions.
Central banks define and conduct the monetary policy of African states
The Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO), based in Dakar, is the note-issuing bank of the WAEMU. It is headed by a Governor, appointed for a renewable term of six years by the Conference of Heads of State and Government. The Governor chairs the Board of Directors, which is responsible for issues relating to the management of the BCEAO, the Monetary Policy Committee, which defines the monetary policy of the WAEMU and its instruments, and the Banking Commission of the WAEMU, which is the supervisory authority for credit institutions and microfinance institutions. The agreement governing the WAEMU Banking Commission specifies that it comprises the Governor of the central bank, a representative appointed by each member state, a representative of the state guaranteeing the convertibility of the common currency (a provision that ceased to apply with the 2019 agreement) and members appointed by the WAEMU Council of Ministers, on the proposal of the Governor, on the basis of their competence in the banking field. The central bank provides the secretariat and covers the costs of the Banking Commission.
Pursuant to the agreements of 21 December 2019, France no longer appoints a representative to either the BCEAO's Board of Directors or the Monetary Policy Committee. However, the latter includes an independent and qualified member, appointed intuitu personae by the WAEMU Council of Ministers in consultation with the French government.
The current Governor, appointed in 2011, is Tiémoko Meyliet Kone. He was reappointed for a six-year term in 2020.
The Bank of West African States (BEAC), based in Yaoundé, is the note-issuing bank of the WAEMU. It is headed by a Governor, appointed for a non-renewable term of seven years by the Conference of Heads of State and Government. The Governor chairs the Monetary Policy Committee, which defines the monetary policy of the CEMAC and its instruments, as well as the Central African Banking Commission (COBAC), which is responsible for the supervision of credit institutions and microfinance institutions. The Board of Directors of the BEAC, which manages the Central Bank and ensures its smooth operation, is chaired by the current Chairman of the Ministerial Committee of the Central African Monetary Union (UMAC).
Under the UMAC treaty and the BEAC statutes, France, like the six CEMAC states, appoints two directors and two members of the Monetary Policy Committee.
The current Governor of the BEAC is, appointed in 2017, is Abbas Mahamat Tolli.
The Central Bank of the Comoros (BCC), based in Moroni, is the note-issuing bank and the supervisory authority for the Comorian banking sector. It is headed by a Governor, appointed for a renewable five-year term by the President of the Comoros. The Board of Directors defines and implements monetary policy, manages the central bank and takes decisions on banking supervision.
Under the BCC's statutes, four of the eight members of the Board of Directors are appointed by the French government, and the other four by the Comorian government. The Chair of the Board of Directors is elected by the Board from among its Comorian members.
The current Governor of the BCC, appointed in 2017, is Dr Younoussa Imani.
WAEMU and CEMAC: monetary unions supplemented by economic unions
Established in Dakar (Senegal) on 10 January 1994, against the backdrop of the devaluation of the XOF, the WAEMU was created as a complement to the Monetary Union, with four objectives: the harmonisation of the legal and regulatory framework, the creation of a common market to replace the existing customs union, the multilateral surveillance of macroeconomic policies and the coordination of national sectoral policies.
The main political objectives of WAEMU are defined by the Conference of Heads of State and Government and implemented by the Council of Ministers. The WAEMU Commission, with its headquarters in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, is its executive body.
Created in N'Djamena (Chad) on 16 March 1994, the CEMAC is made up of two entities: The Central African Monetary Union (UMAC), a framework for legal harmonisation, trade integration and economic convergence, and the UMAC.
The Conference of Heads of State and Government is the supreme authority of CEMAC and is responsible for determining its policy. It steers the work of the UEAC Council of Ministers, which heads the Economic Union, and the UMAC Ministerial Committee, which has extensive powers in the management of the BEAC and ensures that national economic policies are consistent with the common monetary policy. The CEMAC Commission, based in Bangui (Central African Republic), is the executive body of the Community.
The WAEMU and the CEMAC are both implementing a process of regional economic convergence and integration, which contributes to the stability of their single currency. In this respect, they have multilateral surveillance mechanisms: in both unions, compliance with the convergence criteria is monitored by the Commission, which submits corrective measures to the Council of Ministers if necessary.
Updated on: 04/05/2022 11:40